LVPL-41B496: Medieval ampulla

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AMPULLA

Unique ID: LVPL-41B496

Object type certainty: Certain
Workflow status: Awaiting validation Find awaiting validation

Incomplete cast lead ampulla dating to the Medieval period, (1100-1500). One half of the bowl and the neck of the object is missing. The bowl is semi-circular in plan. The scars of one handle which would have connected the neck of the object to the body can be seen. Each face of the ampulla is decorated with cross-hatching above which is the partial remains of a crown. The object has a greyish patina. A similar example is no.180, p89, Spencer, (1990).

Brian Spencer, formerly Senior Keeper at the Museum of London, who made a life-time study of ampullae, has written: 'Ampullae or miniature phials were an important kind of souvenir. Generally flask-shaped, but with a narrow, flattish section, they were designed to contain a dose of the thaumaturgic water that was dispensed to pilgrims at many shrines and holy wells. Ampullae were made of tin or lead or tin-lead alloy and were provided with a pair of handles or loops so that they could be suspended from a cord or chain around the wearer's neck. Coming into use in the last quarter of the twelfth century, they were, in England, almost the only kind of pilgrim souvenir to be had during the thirteenth century. They were nevertheless available at a number of shrines, and thanks to returning pilgrims or to local entrepreneurs, probably featured as secondary relics in virtually every thirteenth-century English parish church.

Subsequent actions

Subsequent action after recording: Returned to finder

Chronology

Broad period: MEDIEVAL
Period from: MEDIEVAL
Period to: MEDIEVAL
Date from: Circa AD 1100
Date to: Circa AD 1500

Dimensions and weight

Quantity: 1
Length: 28.85 mm
Width: 18.1 mm
Thickness: 7.24 mm
Weight: 9.7 g

Discovery dates

Date(s) of discovery: Tuesday 27th November 2012

Rally details.

This object was found at Blakenhall Charity Rally

Personal details

Found by: This information is restricted for your login.
Recorded by: Ms Vanessa Oakden
Identified by: Ms Vanessa Oakden

Materials and construction

Primary material: Lead Alloy
Manufacture method: Cast
Completeness: Fragment

Spatial metadata

Region: North West (European Region)
County or Unitary authority: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)
District: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)
To be known as: Blakenhall

Spatial coordinates


Grid reference source: From finder
Unmasked grid reference accurate to a 1 metre square.

Discovery metadata

Method of discovery: Metal detector
Discovery circumstances: Found while metal detecting
General landuse: Cultivated land
Specific landuse: Character undetermined

References cited

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Timeline of associated dates

Audit data

Recording Institution: LVPL
Created: Tuesday 10th April 2012
Updated: Thursday 11th February 2016

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